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Article posted: June 12, 2000
By: Fawne Stratford-Devai   Biography & Archived Articles

This issue of English and Welsh Roots is a compilation of news items, links and notes that have been piling up in a file. To date, extra bits and links have been included at the end of regular articles. With so many links and notes of late, this column is devoted to what's new, old and/or interesting. Before heading off on research adventures this summer, be sure to check out these helpful resources.

LDS Family History Library Catalog Now Available on CD-ROM
The LDS Family History Library Catalog is new, improved and available to everyone on CD-ROM!!! This important resource allows researchers to sit at their home computers and identify sources they want to research before visiting the Family History Library or a local Family History Center. The compact disc version of the catalog: Describes the Church's collection of family history materials, which consist of over 2.5 million microforms and 300,000 books. Most importantly, the CD Allows searches by keyword, title, author, and call number to place, surname, subject, and film number searches. Researchers can even mark information found and come back to it in the future. For the forgetful in all of us, the CD even maintains a history of records reviewed in each search. The CD requires users to have Windows 95, 98, or NT 4.0+, at least a Pentium processor (or better), 8MB RAM (16 MB recommended), minimum 4x CD-ROM drive, 4 megs of hard-disk space, Microsoft Internet Explorer 4.0 (or higher). The Family History Library Catalog on CD (item number 50081000) can be ordered for $5.00 US through the various Church distribution centers around the world, by telephone for those in Canada or the US at 1-800-537-5971 and on the internet at the well known website: Well known is perhaps the understatement of the year when you consider that May 13, 2000 saw the 3 Billionth hit on the Family Search website! According to the press release the Family Search Website receives 8 million hits a day. For more about the website milestone see the news release at:

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has been gathering genealogical records worldwide for more than a century to promote family history research. Today, the Church is a world leader in family history. In addition to its massive collection of records at its Salt Lake City library, the Church operates more than 3,400 Family History Centers worldwide.


UK National Digital Archive of Datasets (NDAD): NDAD contains archived digital data from UK government departments and agencies. The system has been available since March 1998 and provides open access to the catalogues of all its holdings, and free access to open datasets following a simple registration process. The information in this archive is primarily UK government data that has been prepared or stored on computer, along with associated documents which are scanned and stored as both image and text files. Public documents on paper which have not been digitized (such as certificates of birth, marriage and death) are not within the present scope of this system.

British Methodism and the Poor 1739-1999 - An exhibition by the Methodist Archives and Research Centre This exceptional exhibit is rich in information, photographs and primary archival material. Items within the exhibit include: e: Account of Cash Received, from the LONDON SOCIETY Steward's Book, 1766-1802; WEST STREET CHAPEL, LONDON Poor Fund Ledger, 1764-96; THE STRANGERS' FRIEND SOCIETY Cash Book of the Manchester branch, 1791-92; JOHN WESLEY Letter to Mr Dobson, Steward of the Charity School 21 February 1786; SALFORD METHODIST CLOTHING SOCIETY Minute Book, 1819-46 ; Rules for the General Government of the Methodist Charity Schools belonging to the London East Circuit, Instituted 1807; STRANGERS' FRIEND SOCIETY Report...for the purpose of visiting and relieving the sick and distressed strangers and other poor at their respective habitations; A Sunday School class in the inner-city c.1890; LONDON EAST END MISSION Account of Work among the Poor, 1888-91; Hood Street Men's Shelter, Manchester; Queen Victoria Seamen's Rest, London; Central Mission, Deptford, London; A Sister of the People waiting outside Strangeways Prison, Manchester; MANCHESTER GIRLS' PREVENTATIVE AND TRAINING HOME Admission form for c.189- ; Women queuing for relief at the Manchester Mission offices c.1900 ; Open air evangelism in Manchester c.1910 ; Unemployed men working in the Mission timber yard c.1930

Hospital Records Database The Public Record Office has now created a database of the location of hospital records online. The Hospital Records Database provides researchers with information on the existence and location of the records of hospitals in the U.K. Currently over 2,800 entries can be found by searching the database using a simple enquiry screen. It is important to note that the information has been obtained mainly from questionnaires completed by local authority record offices, supplemented by further research. A small number of hospitals which maintain their own archives have been included, but coverage of records still held by hospitals is limited. The Information held on the database includes:

  • The administrative details of the hospitals, and their status or type
  • The location and covering dates of administrative and clinical records
  • The existence of lists, catalogues or other finding aids

The database can be searched by name of the hospital or by the name of the town and covers the entire UK . Many hospitals assumed the responsibility and records of Union Workhouses. More than 130 records were found in the database when the word "union" is typed into the field for hospital name. Examples of matching records include:

  • Bedford General Hospital (North Wing) whose records are held by Bedfordshire Record Office was previously known as Bedford House of Industry (1796 - 1835), Bedford Union Workhouse (1835 - 1929) and St Peter's Hospital (1929 - 1948). It is located at 3 Kimbolton Road Bedford MK40 2NU and was founded in 1796. It's status before 1948 fell under the Poor Law (1835-1929) with responsibility as both a general hospital and Tuberculosis.

After clicking on the "details" button, we discover records dating back to 1811 (including admission and discharge records as early as 1835. Under "other information" we learn that Bernard Cashman published a book for the North Bedfordshire Health Authority in 1988 about the hospital called Private Charity and the Public Purse. The records for the hospital are found at the Bedfordshire Record Office, Bedford, MK42 9AP. The Bedfordshire pages on the GenUKI website provides additional contact information for the Archives and links to other Bedfordshire resources

Many other hospitals performed Poor Law and other critical functions which generated invaluable records for Family Historians. For example, results from the "union" search also include such entries as:

  • The Retreat Hospital, Cornwall (Poor Law: circa 1837-1930) whose records are available from the Cornwall Record Office.
  • St. Peter's Hospital, London (Poor Law, Stepney Board of Guardians 1842-1930) whose records are available from the London Metropolitan Archives.
  • Warfe Grange Hospital, Wetherby, West Yorkshire. The records are held by the West Yorkshire Archive Service. Wetherby Union Workhouse was built in 1863 to replace an earlier building in North Street. After the establishment of the National Health Service in 1948 it took the name of Wharfe Grange Hospital. The Hospital closed in 1993. Records include such items as: Register of births in Wetherby Workhouse (1864 - 1953); Register of deaths in Wetherby Workhouse, including some information on cause of death, age and place of interment (1864 - 1967) and many others too rich to describe in this brief outline.
  • Hill House Hospital, Wicklewood, Norfolk. The records are held by the Norfolk Record Office. Forehoe Incorporation of Poor/Poor Law Union records date from 1778. Date of Construction of Workhouse Infirmary has not been established. Records include Admission and discharges (1777-1957).

Researchers wanting information about the records of specific hospitals, should contact the relevant archives/repository directly. To learn more about contact information, addresses and even holdings of archives and repositories in England see:

EARL The EARL Consortium of UK public libraries works to promote the role of public libraries in providing library and information services across the network. Explore the staggering variety of services available including the searchable magazine, journal and newspaper finder known as MagNet and Familia:

Familia Familia is a web-based directory of family history resources held in public libraries in the UK and Ireland. Updated and maintained by the Family History Task Group of the EARL Consortium, Familia is the on-line starting-place to find information about materials in public libraries which will help you trace your family history.


Lookup United Kingdom target="_blank"> One of the largest and most popular websites for those in search of UK Lost Friends - Relatives - Missing Persons with more than 20000 Messages Online. Fully Searchable - Messages are Free.

Somerset Parish Records Visit the website of Michael Tutton from Toronto, Ontario for the Parish records and information about the town of Wedmore in Somerset. Parish records for marriages and baptisms from 1561 to the 1800's. This site also contains the Tutton family tree.

The Devon 1891 Census Transcription Project ; This important project aims to provide a free online searchable transcription of the 1891 Census for Devon. It is intended as a pilot project, testing out organizational procedures and specially-designed software which is hoped will prove suitable for, and encourage the undertaking of, a planned much larger project, the FreeCEN Project, that would encompass other UK counties and census years. The project was initiated and planned largely by John Lerwill, with the assistance of a number of people, in particular Bob Muchamore and Sue Kinsella (Australia), Nick Mayne, Brian Randell and Phil Stringer (U.K.), and Ray Osborn (New Zealand). John Lerwill remains in charge of the overall technical aspects of the project, while the task of overall project coordination is presently handled by Brian Randell. In order to spread the workload, and reduce postal expenses, much of the organisation of volunteers is handled on a regional basis, by:

Dennis Radford assisted by Roy Conibear (US and Canada),
Lesley Dawson assisted by Ros Haywood (UK), and
Bob Muchamore assisted by Julie Wheeler (Australia and New Zealand).

Additional volunteers are very welcome - a few more transcribers are needed, and a larger number of checkers will shortly be required to help with the upcoming checking task. They should contact either the appropriate Regional Coordinator, depending on where they are located, or the Project Coordinator.

Railway Ancestors Family History Society The purpose of the RAILWAY ANCESTORS (FAMILY HISTORY SOCIETY) is to help members trace their Family Ancestry in England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland, and also British Railwaymen Overseas, by informing them of Records, Documents, Books, Special Collections, Etc., that exist in the Record repositories and by discovering and investigating previously unknown sources.

Relative value of sums of Money.1264 - 1980 Also Gives some indication of wages for various occupations and trade in the past. Also try clicking on the links and at the bottom where it says return to front page to see a list of names in someone's genealogy, maybe a link to yours?

Weights and Measures Did you know -- The bushel was a measure of capacity used for corn, fruit, etc. The imperial bushel, legally established in Great Britain in 1826, contained 2218.192 cubic inches, or 80 pounds of distilled water weighed in air at 62° Fahrenheit. The Winchester bushel, much used from the time of Henry VIII, was somewhat smaller, containing 2150.42 cubic inches, or 77.627413 pounds of distilled water; it is still generally used in the USA and Canada. The bushel had a great variety of other values, now abolished by law, though often in local use, varying not only from place to place, but in the same place according to the kind or quality of the commodity in question. Frequently it was no longer a measure of capacity, but a weight of so many [eg 30, 40, 45, 50, 56, 60, 70, 75, 80, 90, 93, 220] pounds of flour, wheat, oats, potatoes, etc. Also check out the dates and Regal Years showing the Reign of each King and Queen.

Internal Purchasing Power of the Pound 1914 -1997 A helpful website from Government Statistical Services.

Victorian Census Project Directed by David Alan Gatley, the Victorian Census Project at Staffordshire University "aims to computerize a number of source documents and related materials relating to Great Britain in the mid-nineteenth century." These include nineteenth century census abstracts, vital registration statistics, Poor Law Commissioner returns, and Pigot's and Slater's Typology of England and Wales. This database has the potential to significantly broaden our understanding of British society in the nineteenth century in a number of areas, including health and disease, education and literacy, occupations and employment, and migration. At present, four sub-sets of variables relating to the 1831 and 1861 censuses, and the Scottish Registrar General's Annual Report for 1861, can be downloaded from the site. Each data set is in comma-delimited format. Additional resources at this site include an introduction to the Census Enumerator's Books and a hypertext version of Pigot's and Slater's Typology (under development).


The Genealogical Services Directory 2000 The 2000 edition is here! The Genealogical Services Directory has quickly developed into an indispensable resource for family historians. The 2000 edition is even bigger than previous years and contains hundreds and hundreds of addresses, as well as articles on military history, conservation and restoration of family documents, caring for your family records, an introduction to the New Poor Law (1834-1929), Bristol and transatlantic slavery, genetics, education records, maps, hearth tax returns, Glamorgan Family History Society, The Land Registry, Internet, Decrees Absolute, and much more. This year there is also a large section on local history, sources, addresses, museums, archives and record offices, LDS Family History Centers, Cemeteries and Crematoria and resources in New Zealand, Western Canada, even the Tingle Factor. The wealth of information in this 360 page book is simply too vast to describe!

Ancestral Trails - Soft Cover By Mark Herber; 2000; 701 pages. This invaluable, best-selling guide to British genealogy and family history now appears in an updated soft cover version. It includes extensive details on all sources of records and information including civil registrations, census returns, parish registers, military, trades, financial, criminal and property records with exceptional illustrations and step by step assistance for those in search of their ancestors. This book includes a supplement added in Spring 2000.

Marriages and Certificates in England & Wales By Barbara Dixon, published in 2000. This 51 page booklet aims to help family historians find and make the most of the information on marriage certificates in England and Wales. It looks at the history of marriage registration throughout the ages and the interpretation of post 1837 certificates.

Greater London Cemetaries and Crematoria by Patricia Wolfston, revised by Cliff Webb. The sixth edition of this valuable book lists the cemeteries and crematoria of London with their addresses and where to find their records. This simple 40 page booklet can prove exceptionally helpful to finding where people are buried in London.


Images of England Directed by the National Monuments Record, the public archive of English Heritage, Images of England is building a photographic record of England's 360,000 listed buildings to place on the internet by 2002. In the first three-month photographic survey, which began in August 1999, approximately 500 volunteer photographers in England captured over 39,000 images. The second survey, which began on May 1 2000, will involve over 650 photographers. The photographs taken by Images of England volunteers are the copyright of the individual photographers, as indicated next to each image. They should only be downloaded for press work and publicity relating to Images of England. From the Regional Information link ( click on the map to choose a region and then have a look at the sample images already online for the area. Images of England looks to be a great resource in the making.

Britannia Internet Magazine target="_blank"> Britannia Internet Magazine is a monthly e-zine that considers itself a "gateway to the British Isles." At this site, interested Internauts can find a combination of articles and web resources on travel, sports, news, science, history, people, government, the arts, and other topics, as they relate to the British Isles. It is easy and fun to read, and spares the graphics for those with slow connections. Future issues promise to incorporate streaming video and audio, movie clips, and animations. BIM is a great site for those who want to keep up on all things British. About the only thing missing at present is an organized complete archive of past issues.


Second Stages in Researching Welsh Ancestry by John and Sheila Rowlands. A follow-up to their popular book Welsh Family History the new book offers a vast array of information for anyone researching their Welsh roots. The book includes information about many little appreciated resources. Anyone involved in Welsh genealogy research soon learns that they must have some understanding of the social, cultural, religious, and economic background of the communities in which their ancestors lived. "Second Stages in Researching Welsh Ancestry" attempts to broaden and expand that understanding, especially for the period prior to 1800, when most researchers begin to experience difficulties.

Anyone who has had any success in researching their Welsh ancestry will know that a grasp of specialized Welsh genealogical methods and sources is only one of several factors that contributed to that success. The book follows the format of the popular first book. Both books have their origins in the residential courses in family history offered at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth, since 1986, and, although there is some overlap in the time periods considered within the two books, there is virtually no duplication of content.

Apart from coverage of community life, there are chapters relating to different occupations, surnames, old documents, maps, estate records, and family histories. The book contains several case studies and is rounded off with examples of work done as part of the accreditation process on some more recent university courses. Other chapters cover Catholics in Wales, Urban Growth and Development, People in Mining and Metals, Bartrum's Welsh Genealogies, Homes of Surnames, English Settlement in Montgomeryshire, and Religion and Society in 19th-century Wales. This carefully crafted, thoughtful, and detailed book is a must for those researching Welsh genealogy.

WalesGenWeb Project This ever growing helpful website is a must stop on the Welsh researchers internet travels. The site contains extensive links, helpful resources, including biography and query boards. Most importantly, the Wales GenWeb project includes detailed county pages for all of Wales. For example:

  • Monmouthshire GenWeb Page Take a moment and check out the relatively new Monmouthshire County page on the WalesGenWeb project. Filled with helpful information about Archives, Lookup exchange, links, Family History Societies and more.


Genealogy Newsletter Editor's Corner Newsletter editors are always searching for interesting articles, clip art, fillers and such to put together an interesting and informative publication. This gathering spot feature articles, clipart and fillers that can be used freely to make the job easier. Links take you to those sites that are willing to share - and list the necessary steps, if permission is needed. A great resource for those publishing newsletters!

Family Tree Magazine The June 12000 issue of Family Tree Magazine will be available to researchers soon and includes helpful articles, research tips and more on such matters as: Postcards from the Great War; by Tony Allen; Military matters; by John Spencer (The last in the series - volunteers and conscripted men in recent times); A report of the Federation of Family History Societies' Spring Conference; The popular Pitfalls & possibilities in family history research by Pauline Litton on Parish burial registers - why are some of our ancestors missing?; Views from the Public Record Office and Family Records Centre; Reclaimed foundlings, by Anthony Camp; Settlers of the Old Empire: Anguilla by John Titford; Genealogical musings in Calcutta by Andrew Tweedie; A generation grid by Frank Leeson; The "Captain Swing" Riots: Part II by Peter Wotton; Coincidence or fate? by Eunice Wilson.

The May 2000 issue of Family Tree Magazine carried helpful information and articles for those researching their UK ancestors. Part one of the Captain Swing Riots; Pauline Litton's Pitfalls and Possibilities covered Marriage Licences (part 2); Researching Telephone Directories; Bank of England Will extracts; Regimental Army numbers; Unpublished 18th and 19th century marriage registers of old Cambridge Colleges and the Voyage of the Lady Egidia to New Zealand 1860-1861. Listing of Family Tree Magazine Issues

Practical Family History Practical Family History Magazine from the UK for June 12000 will also soon be available and includes such helpful information as: Schooling for soldiers by Iain Swinnerton; Looking through their eyes: Lies, damned lies and family history by Michael Gandy; East India Company: Part II by Paul Blake; How did they get home? by Margaret Wedge; Remembered days and faces by Pat Parkinson; Weston-Super-Mare's monumental inscriptions by K N James; Buried according to the Act by Janet Lilley; Tracing my Blake ancestry by Blake Pinnell; Victorian rough and tumble by Gillian MacNamara; All work and no play? by Gillian Howard; Town poverty by Richard Johns; A little touched in the head (Varied attitudes to the treatment of the insane.) by Liz Carter; Some London Gazette listings by Michael Armstrong and the helpful Topical tips by Pauline Saul.

The May 2000 issue of Practical Family History contained a very helpful articles such as when and how different Army ranks came into being under the title Bless'em all by Ian Swinnerton; Part one of The British in India by Paul Blake; extremely helpful information about Vaccination Registers by Philip Jones as well as information about Baptist Ministers, and the first part of an article on Prisoners and Policemen by Tom Wood. Listing of Practical Family History Issues

GenUKI GenUKI is always busy adding links, parish records, indexes and vast amounts of information to its website and detailed county pages. Examples of new entries recently, include:

  • Warwickshire Links added: Notes from the 1821 Census; Photographs - Heart of England; Archdiocese of Birmingham (RC) Records; Birmingham Commercial College; Birmingham Dramatic News 1885; Birmingham Nonconformist and Roman Catholic Registers; Hobnobbing with the gentry in Bermuda - Warwick reference; Obsolete Street Names (1885 Style); Parish Records, Birmingham Library; Royal Warwicks in South Africa; Showell's 1885 Directory; Warwickshire Cemeteries; Warwickshire Regiments and their Histories; William Barr Diary; 18 Antique postcards of Birmingham.
  • Yorkshire North Riding Links added/amended for North Riding Parishes -- Where is it in Yorkshire; [Alne] St. Stephen's Church, Alne; [Alne] The Church of St. Mary the Virigin; [Alne] St. Michael's Chapel, Tollerton; [Ampleforth] At the Church Gates; [Appleton Wiske] Photograph of St. Mary's Church; [Appleton Wiske] Churches of Yorkshire; [Arkengarthdale] Photographs of the Arkengarthdale Area; [Brandsby] All Saints Church, Brandsby; [Cayton] Baptisms; [Cayton] Marriages; [Cayton] Burials; [Cayton] Church Officials; [Cold Kirby] St. Michael's Church, Cold Kirby; [Coxwold] St. Michael's Church, Coxwold; [Coxwold] Holy Trinity Church, Yearsley; [Crayke] St. Cuthbert's Church, Crayke; [Easingwold] St. John's Church, Easingwold; [Easingwold] St. Mary's Church, Raskelf; [Gilling East] The Church of the Holy Cross, Gilling East; [Great Thirkleby] All Saints' Church, Great Thirkleby; [Grinton] the Reeth area; [Grinton] the Swaledale area; [Grinton] further information for Grinton Lodge; [Hackness] St. Peter's Church, Hackness; [Helmsley] All Saints' Church, Helmsley; [Helmsley] St. Mary's Church, Rievaulx; [Helmsley] St. Chad's Church, Sproxton; [Helmsley] St. Saviour's Church, Harome; [Husthwaite] St. Nicholas' Church, Husthwaite; [Husthwaite] St. Mary's Church, Carlton Husthwaite; [Kilburn] St. Mary's Church, Kilburn; [Kirby Knowle] St. Mary's Church, Bagby; [Kirkbymoorside] All Saints' Church, Kirkbymoorside; [Kirkdale] St. Hilda's Church, Beadlam; [Levisham] The Church of St. John the Baptist, Levisham; [Malton] St. Michael's Church; [Masham] Photograph of St. Mary's Church, Masham; [Middleton] St. Andrew's Church, Middleton; [Middleton] St Giles' Church, Lockton; [Newton upon Ouse] All Saints' Church, Newton upon Ouse; [Old Byland] All Saints' Church, Old Byland; [Old Malton] St. Mary's Church, Old Malton; [Osmotherley] photographs of the Osmotherley area; [Oswaldkirk] St. Oswald's Church, Oswaldkirk; [Pickering] photographs of the Goathland area; [Richmond] photographs of the Richmond area; [Scarborough] Professions and Trades in 1840; [Scawton] St. Mary's Church, Scawton; [Sessay] St. Cuthbert's Church, Sessay; [Sinnington] All Saints' Church, Sinnington; [Thormanby] St. Mary's Church; [Thornton Dale] All Saints' Church, Thornton Dale; [Topcliffe] Photograph of St. John's Church, Skipton on Swale; [Whitby] photographs of the Whitby area; [Yarm] photographs of the Yarm area.

Spartacus Internet Encyclopedia: British History 1700-1950: British History: 1700-1950 is a comprehensive encyclopaedia containing over 2,800 entries. The encyclopaedia is an attempt to show the history of Britain through the eyes of people from all levels of society. The text within each entry is hyperlinked to other relevant pages in the encyclopaedia. In this way it is possible to research individual people and events in great detail. The sources are also hyperlinked so the researcher is able to find out about the writer, artist, newspaper, organisation, etc., that produced the material. An excellent and helpful site for those wanting to learn more about British History!

BLPES Pamphlet Collection In a welcome move to researchers and historians, the British Library of Political and Economic Science (BLPES) has created an online guide to its large pamphlet collection, containing some 90,000 pamphlets, many from the 19th and early 20th centuries. While covering a number of important public and political issues in British history, the collection also contains a fair amount of European and International materials, including a large number of German-language pamphlets, as well as materials on Latin American trade unions, the League of Nations, pacifism, the two World Wars, and conflict in the Middle East. Users can browse the guide by fifteen topics (e.g., Issues in British history, political parties, social policy, poor laws, transport, etc.) or search the online catalog by subject keyword, author, title, or issuing body. The guide lists pamphlet author, title, and classmark, while the online catalog also includes publisher, pages, location, and other notes. As an added bonus, the majority of pamphlets listed in the social policy and transport guides have been digitized and are available in .pdf format.


Now that my "extra bits" file is reduced there are many resources, links, databases and publications still to cover in future issues of English and Welsh Roots. From research using Wills to Poor Laws records to Immigration resources, Maps, Home Children help, Workhouse information and data, Convicts, Occupations, additional coverage of Archival databases and of course more on Military and Maritime resources. There is simply far too much to be done. Until the next issue, please remember:

Your research is the legacy you leave to others - verify all information you find!

About Fawne Stratford-Devai
Fawne Stratford-Devai's work on Land Records and early Ontario records is well known in the genealogy community. A published author of several Canadian and UK research books, she has also contributed articles to the Ontario Genealogical Society's newsletter "Families" as well as writing for the online family history newsletter the "Global Gazette". Biography

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